• 05 JUL 11
    • 1

    ICNIRP’s cavalry to the rescue

    Just like in those old US Western TV shows, when the cowboys were under threat from the marauding Indians and all was about to be lost, the Cavalry rides to the rescue just in time. Now we have the mobile phone industry under threat from the mounting scientific evidence that long term mobile phone use is apparently linked to cancer. The IARC recent 2B classification indicates the tide on the evidence. One of the implications of this is that all those stalled brain tumour cases in the US (blocked by the US Daubert Appeal court decision – see my thesis, pages 57 – 64) may be restarted. The fear of a possible link being established was expressed by Australia’s Telesta in its 2004 Annual Report where it was stated in bold type, under the heading “Risk factors” that “the establishment of a link between adverse health effects and electromagnetic energy (EME) could expose us to liability or negatively affect our operations” .

    As I have shown in previous writings, and my thesis, this is what ICNIRP is really all about – to ensure that such a link is never made.

    So, to eliminate the threat the industry has called on ICNIRP’s Cavalry, in the guise of the “Standing Committee on Epidemiology” to head off the science (the Indians) in the pass and eliminate the threat once and for all. Remember that Anders Ahlbom who was kicked off the IARC panel for having industry links was once chairman of the ICNIRP’s Standing Committee on Epidemiology. He was in good company with the current crowd on the committee.

    Their plan of attack was to have published in a prestigious journal expert opinion (more rightly expert deception) “that the trend in the accumulating evidence is increasingly against the hypothesis that mobile phone use can cause brain tumours in adults“. Of course this does not include children one of the largest groups of mobile phones and long term use for everybody.

    Then feed stories to the media that give the impression that the science is settled. There is no risk. Examples:

    From Reuters, July 2: New research (again) clears cellphones on cancer risk

    AND: News Daily, July 4: Evidence “increasingly against” phone cancer risk

    ICNIRP’s latest spin on cell phone science:

    Mobile Phones, Brain Tumours and the Interphone Study: Where Are We Now?

    Anthony J. Swerdlow, Maria Feychting, Adele C. Green, Leeka Kheifets, David A. Savitz, International Commission for Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection Standing Committee on Epidemiology

    Abstract

    Background: In the past 15 years, mobile phone use has evolved from an uncommon activity to one with over 4.6 billion subscriptions worldwide. There is, however, public concern about the possibility that mobile phones might cause cancer, especially brain tumours.

    Objectives: To review the evidence on whether mobile phone use raises risk of the main types of brain tumour, glioma and meningioma, with a particular focus on the recent publication of the largest epidemiological study yet – the 13-country Interphone Study.

    Discussion: Methodological deficits limit the conclusions that can be drawn from Interphone, but its results, along with those from other epidemiological, biological and animal studies, and brain tumour incidence trends, suggest that within about 10-15 years after first use of mobile phones there is unlikely to be a material increase in the risk of brain tumours in adults. Data for childhood tumours and for periods beyond 15 years are currently lacking.

    Conclusions: Although there remains some uncertainty, the trend in the accumulating evidence is increasingly against the hypothesis that mobile phone use can cause brain tumours in adults.

    Citation: Swerdlow AJ, Feychting M, Green AC, Kheifets L, Savitz DA, International Commission for Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection Standing Committee on Epidemiology 2011. Mobile Phones, Brain Tumours and the Interphone Study: Where Are We Now? Environ Health Perspect :-. doi:10.1289/ehp.1103693

    Received: 18 March 2011; Accepted: 29 June 2011; Online: 01 July 2011

    A pdf of the paper at this link

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